Old Testament: Isaiah 51:1-53:12
Isaiah 51:1-53:12 Jesus
Chap. 51 Yahweh will subdue all of Israel’s enemies. McGee says, “The enemies of Israel will not escape the judgment of God. Every nation that has majored in anti-Semitism has fallen: Egypt, Persia, Rome, Spain, Belgium, and Germany. This chapter should alert the believers today that God will yet choose Israel, and that the events in the Near East indicate that we are fast approaching the end times, although no specific prophecy is being fulfilled in this hour.” He said that in the late 70’s. The time of prophetical fulfillment is even closer now. And we can see it in all that’s going on in the Middle East now.
Chap. 52 The beginning of this chapter is an invitation to Israel to return to Yahweh. The remainder, from v. 13 on, is about Jesus.
Chap. 53:1-12 This chapter should just be labeled Jesus. It is an Old Testament portrait of the Messiah. The gospel is contained in Isa. 53:6, “All we like sheep have gone astray, we have all gone our own way, and the Lord has laid on Him the iniquity of us all.” That is technically what we call “substitutionary atonement.” Jesus took the penalty we deserved and died in our place.
Handel used verses 4-6 and 8 in his famous portrait of Christ, The Messiah.
New Testament: Ephesians 5:1-33
Ephesians 5:1-33 The Walk Of Light
Remember the last half of Ephesians are practical applications based on the doctrine in the first half of the book. How many people think they can live their Christian lives without knowing doctrine? Then why did God have Paul write so much doctrine and then follow it with practical exhortations?
I can only swoop in and out since we only have one day to cover this important chapter. Everything centers on “walking in love” (v. 2) and imitating God (v. 1).
We live in a day and age of immorality yet Paul commands that we do not even make any allusions to immorality (v. 3). There shall not be any raunchy talk yet we are fed a constant diet of this on TV, movies, cable, and the internet (v. 4a). Instead, we are to be “thankful” (v. 4b).
Verse 5 does not mean that there won’t be any immoral, impure or idolatrous, covetous person (greed is idolatry because money and things are prioritized before God) who makes it to Heaven. There will be plenty up there. But they won’t be sinners when they are up there and therefore, should be sinners down here either!
Christians are to walk in the light not darkness (vv. 6-14, cf. 1 John 1:6-7).
Christians are to be careful how they walk, making the most of their time (v. 15-16). One emphasis should be winning others to the Lord. That is something we can not do from Heaven. Christians are not to be foolish but they should be sensitive to the Spirit, learning the Word so they can understand and do the “will of the Lord” (v. 17).
Christians should never get drunk. In contrast, they should be filled with the Spirit. Alcohol is sometimes called “spirits,” perhaps because when drunk the alcohol controls the person. Christians are to be controlled by God through the Spirit. (See blogs on being sensitive to the Spirit: Get The “Led” Out and Sensitive To The Spirit). When we completely yield ourselves to God and doing His bidding, we are filled with the Spirit (v. 18). Other commands concerning the Spirit are Eph. 4:30; Gal. 5:16; 1 Thess. 5:19.
The results of being filled with the Spirit are singing spiritual songs, giving thanks to God for everything, and being submissive to others in the body because we want to please the Lord (v. 19 -21). Notice that the results of being filled with the Spirit are about the same as being immersed in the Word (cf. Col. 3:16-17).
We should be submissive to each other (v. 21) but wives are specifically singled out to be submissive to their husbands (v. 22). Though there is a usually a subtitle after v. 21, v. 21 is really an umbrella verse over the entire topic of relationships in v. 22 through 6:9. Wives, husbands, family members, slaves and masters should all be submissive to each other while maintaining the authority that God has assigned them. Even pastors are not to “lord” it over their flocks (cf. 1 Pet. 5:1-3).
I attended a marriage conference one time and the question came up, “why are wives singled out for submission”? The answer was that the teacher thought that women had more of a problem with submission while men had more of a problem with love (cf. vv. 25-29). Submission doesn’t mean that wives should walk five steps behind their husbands. It means that husbands have the last say if they are not in agreement. I’ve found it best to often use my authority to choose my wife’s suggestion. She’s often right and keeps me out of trouble! But sometimes I have to decide to go with my inclination, knowing that I will ultimately answer to God.
A friend of mine was once cornered by a reporter and asked about his famous father’s sermon on wives submitting to their husbands. He prayed quick and answered that if the reporter read the passage (vv. 25-30) and saw that husbands were to love their wives like Christ loved the church that it shouldn’t be a problem. He asked the reporter, “Who wouldn’t want a husband like that?” This is what the reporter replied, ” . . . .”
When a couple gets married, it is time to leave their families behind in the sense that the Moms and Dads are no longer their authorities. Wives shouldn’t be running back to their Moms all the times getting advice. They are now “one” with their husbands and have formed a new entity and a new family. Authoritative bonds must be broken with their old family or harm will be done to their new family. The new bonds must be respected. The new unity between a man and wife is a “mystery,” Paul says but it is symbolic of the church and Jesus (v. 32).
Psalm 69:19-36 A Blots, Blotted, Part 2 A Lament by David
Proverbs 24:7 Hanging At The Gate
Technically speaking, a fool in the book of Proverbs is an unbeliever. If we’re not speaking technically, a fool is just a fool. You know a dork, a loser, a dip, a dimbulb, a knucklehead. Ok, you get the idea. He is not wise.
True biblical godly wisdom is not attainable for the dope.
People in general do not regard him. He isn’t heard amongst the ones who are astute.
Have you noticed that Christians, in general, don’t think like other people think?
We have the wisdom of the Holy Spirit (cf. 1 Cor. 2:12-13). In that time, the spiritual elders congregated by the town’s gate to be smart together. Fools didn’t hang there.
Do you want to hang at the gate?
Choose Life: Scripture: Ephesians 5:18 NASB “Fill ‘Er Up”
“And do not get drunk with wine, for that is dissipation, but be filled with the Spirit,” Ephesians 5:18 NASB
Christians are commanded not to drink alcohol to get drunk. At this point of my life, I don’t see any point in drinking. I can’t think of anything good that comes of it. It destroys many lives and drunk drivers actually kill others. It makes a lot of people MADD.
On the other hand, being controlled by the Holy Spirit makes for a wonderful life. Being filled with the Spirit is the exact opposite of being drunk. To be filled with the Spirit is to be controlled by the Spirit. The results of being filled with the Spirit are very similar to cramming your brain full of Scripture (cf. Col. 3:16-17). But the “abundant life” Jesus talks about (John 10:10b) is the result of both. We are to be filled with the Spirit and stuff our brain full of Bible.
Being “sensitive to the Spirit” is being controlled by listening to God through His Spirit and through His Word. Then act on what you’ve learned.
Do you want an abundant life? It’s an adventure. Start with being filled with the Spirit and then get into the Scripture. You will have an “abundant” life.
Choose an abundant life.
If you do, you will find that you are choosing life (Deut. 30:19)!
Check out my blog from a few days ago, Sensitive To The Holy Spirit. Then purchase the Topical Memory System or go to the Navigator’s web site and look for the Topical Memory System (also Topical Memory System). Start practicing how to listen to God through the Spirit and memorizing the sixty most important verses in the Bible. I know it’s a little bit of work but what do you have to do that’s more important than getting closer to God? You’ll be amazed how your life will change.
The purpose of the Choose Life is to pick a positive help out of the One Year Bible (OYB) reading plan for the day. There is always something positive in the Word of God to cheer us and give us strength. For more on today’s reading, check out my One Year Bible blog: Jesus